Double Edged Sword

I want to dedicate this March 12th to my dear dad, Stan, who died 30 years today. It's a milestone for me as I've now spent two thirds of my life without him, bit of a hard one.

Mum & Dad in their early 20's just engaged

I was only asked the other day if it gets easier, and it does in a way except today. I suppose that's where the double edged sword comes in, I wouldn't miss him as much if he hadn't been so nice and I hadn't liked him so much.

I have been debating with myself whether to talk about this and probably will continue the inner dialogue until I press publish (or delete). His life and death has formed part of who I am and in turn my art practice. I could have gone down the doom and gloom, whoa is me, but he instilled such a positivity inside me as did my lovely mum and I still wish to make them both proud. I do have his quirky sense of humor so I have no hope really.

He was a very creative kind man and we had several pieces of his art around the family home. He'd made this amazing burnished abstract copper reliefs that were mounted on a very chunky piece of cork. Oh yer, very 70's but it was the 70's so that makes it OK and I loved them. My sister and I at the time wore purple velvet hot-pants with white lace up boots so we were a bit of a mod family. Dad was a builder/plumber and mum a seamstress so we were surrounded by creativity, practical creativity, which reflects so much in what I do today.

I didn't realize really until now how much they have influenced me, but I had several, sometimes passionate conversations with lecturers and class mates at art school about what is 'Real Art'. I didn't mind if my work was bought to go with the carpet and cushions, where others came from the another direction arguing that real art is only found in a gallery under a spotlight. I was labeled pragmatic and commercial, oh god I was rebelling against the rebellion.

A great example was when I brought in one of my nudes 'Opal' to be hung in the next exhibition. One of the admin staff saw her and bought her on the spot, still with bubble wrap on. Which was great but the funnest part was when I unwrapped it she started pointing out the colours of her wall and cushions and that it would be perfect for her dinning room. A couple of ladies that had been part of one of these conversations the day before just stood with their mouths open and they took the story back to class.
'Opal'  acrylic, charcoal and soft pastel

Oh and that quirky sense of humor..... he was buried on St Patrick's Day..... good one dad!


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